(Riyadh) – The UAE, represented by the General Authority for Regulating the Telecommunications Sector, TRA, participated in the 23rd session of the Council of Arab Ministers of Communications and Information hosted by the Saudi capital, Riyadh, on 17th and 18th December 2019, under the theme, ‘An Arab ambition for a Digital Generation’, in the presence of several telecommunications and information ministers from Arab countries.
The UAE delegation was headed by Hamad Obaid Al Mansouri, TRA Director-General, and included many TRA managers and staff.
The meeting discussed the future of joint Arab action in ICT, its global developments and implications for the Arab world in the domains of the economy, health, education and others. The meeting also discussed the proposal of the joint Arab Digital Declaration, “Building a prosperous and sustainable Arab digital society”, which reflects the wish of Arab countries to work on building a prosperous, sustainable and harmonious Arab digital society where individuals can grow towards development.
In his speech during the meeting, Al Mansouri stressed that the importance of such an event stems from the importance of the ICT sector, as every development witnessed in the world has become correlated to how advanced the telecommunications infrastructure is. He said, “I hope that the Arab Digital Declaration, in letter and spirit, will be the title of a new Arab era, an era in which the potential of the Arab youth will be unleashed from the ocean to the Gulf, and in which their creative ideas will sprout to contribute to making a bright sustainable digital future.”
The Arab Digital Declaration included five common Arab principles for building a prosperous and sustainable Arab digital society, with the first principle ensuring a digital economy as a new way to promote community growth and stability.
As for the second principle, it provides for reliance on youth as a drive for progress and construction in the digital world, as they are the means to tackle future challenges and the cyberspace, and the key to transforming the Arab digital world into an icon of the world. The third principle stated the importance of Arab data as a fundamental factor for digital development and future leadership, and as a key enabler for the 4IR and digital economy.
The fourth principle of the Declaration stipulates activating innovation since it is the best way to realise aspirations. Lastly, the fifth principle mentions the importance of the union of Arab forces, as military blocs and groupings are of the utmost necessity.